Data By Topic Security & Safety Fire & Disaster Crisis Protection

Disaster aid

Prior to the 1970s, there was no formal federal support for natural disasters. A wave of natural disasters in the 1960s and 1970s changed that. In 1974, President Nixon passed the Disaster Relief Act, establishing the practice of Presidential disaster designations. In 1979, President Carter created the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to coordinate emergency response efforts and national disaster preparedness planning. The federal government provides natural disaster support in three main ways: emergency assistance funding for clean-up and restoration after a disaster, preparedness funding to improve emergency responses to a disaster, and mitigation funding to reduce loss associated with future disasters.